NAWALNY to open the 37th DOK.fest München

Alexei Nawalny © DCM

An important film at the right time: DOK.fest München 2022 opens with NAWALNY.

The film accompanies the most important Russian opposition figure and Putin opponent Alexei Nawalny from the assassination attempt by the Russian secret service to his return to Moscow and his imprisonment. NAWALNY begins with secret footage of the plane in which Alexei Nawalny was to be murdered with the Russian nerve agent Novichok. The viewers are then up close and personal as his wife fights for his life in a Russian hospital; as Nawalny is rescued in the Berlin Charité and regains his strength in the Black Forest. His stay there is at the centre of the film. Together with his family, his team and the Bulgarian journalist Christo Grozev, Nawalny managed to uncover the assassination attempt against him here.

The film was directed by Canadian documentary filmmaker Daniel Roher, whose last film ONCE WERE BROTHERS was produced by Martin Scorsese and Robbie Robertson, among others. This film about The Band was also shown at DOK.fest München last year. Now Daniel Roher will present his new film NAWALNY at the festival opening on 4 May at the Deutsches Theater.

Festival director Daniel Sponsel: "The situation of the political opposition in Russia has become even more dangerous with the war of aggression on Ukraine. But the unmitigated autocrat Putin is also a bit more lonely. With Alexei Nawalny, Putin has an unpredictable and strong political opponent who is willing to put everything on the line, his political strategies and even his own life. Daniel Roher accompanies Nawalny in one of the most dramatic phases of his life. We experience a clever but also opaque self-made politician between family idyll and mortal danger. The film lets us experience a piece of world history up close and witnesses the brutal means Putin uses to assert his power in Russia."

NAWALNY celebrated its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, the German premiere will take place on 04 May at DOK.fest München. After that, NAWALNY will be screened three more times at the festival. On 5 May, the distributor DCM will release the film in cinemas throughout Germany.

Alexei Nawalny is currently imprisoned in the Pokrov prison camp. On 22 March, i.e. after the start of Putin's war of aggression, Nawalny's two-and-a-half-year prison sentence was extended to nine years for alleged fraud. His lawyers have appealed and are demanding acquittal.


Dr. Dominik Petzold
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Daniela Graf

Emily Schuster-Woldan